Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Photos for the bar

My dear mother has taken a bunch of nice digital photos of the high country in north-central California. At the risk of overloading both your puny computers and your puny aesthetic sensibilities, I include my favorites below. Which would you like to see hanging in the bar?

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

I haven't posted in over a week?

Well, it's been a busy week. Most of last week, our carpenter was working, thus preventing us from doing too much. But we did do a little dry wall work, finished our hyper-rustic shelf in the front room, and created a mantel above our fireplace. We also finally finished firming up the stairs to the basement. In the meantime, our carpenter Jon kicked major butt on the panelling between the two rooms, which is now all done except a few details. His welder came in and assembled the steel substructure for our bar, so we finally have something to look at. It's huge, taking up a good portion of the front room, but we like how it divides the space and provides a lot of top-notch bar seating. There's also some fun ledge seating built in between the two rooms.

The weekend was another matter. Jon's dad was in town from Saturday until Monday and the carpenter was gone. At the end of the weekend, we finally got our skylight in--we just need to wait for the HVAC people, and then we can install it and our air conditioning unit at the same time.

This week, our plumber has been working on the second bathroom. Later in the week, we expect our cold box to come in, and for our HVAC ducting to finally make the plunge into the area over the bathrooms. Our bar will need to get faced out with plywood soon as well.

Kevin has been a great help, giving us fruit and ideas on how to build things most efficiently and prettily. I have been growing haphazard facial hair so I seem more grizzled--I don't want to be labeled as a callow naive bumpkin by contractors or prospective bar customers. Kevin says, "You look like sweet boy, or historian." Indeed.

Pictures coming soon from Jon.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Back on the blogosphere

I left my computer at a friend's apartment, so my life became unbloggable for a few days. I felt incomplete, like unsealed brick. Which brings me to an update:

--Brian R. and I sealed the brick wall in the back. It looks a good deal better. We're planning on covering a lot of it with bookcases and benches and flags and such anyway. Brian R. was the guest star of the week, though my buddy Josh helped a bunch too.
--Mudding Phase II, 10-Inch Mudding Bonanza, is complete. Jon Stan rocked the large putty knife as I filled smaller holes with the medium knife. I finished my part and switched to using wood putty on our molding as Jon still toiled. It looks good now, good enough to prime and paint in most places (the wood good enough to sand and stain).
--The Lucite that haunted our dreams is utterly broken and secreted to the basement.
--Phone and Internet! Our land line is 718-858-1951. Isn't that a memorable number? Feel free to use it.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

There's no windchill in bars.

--We had another plumber in today, finished the mudding (relatively incompetently, but that's what sanding's for), and figured out final bar dimensions with our carpenter. We should have an actual bar frame in situ by next week!
--We can't wait for you all to see the rolldown world map we got. It's awesomely out-of-date. Here's a one-word preview: Peiping.
--I also got a glossy 8x10 photo of Nick Swisher that I'm going to try to get him to sign for the bar. If you don't know who Nick Swisher is, you should ( Nick is Jon's favorite, but Justin Duchscherer is my favorite. I'm going to get a photo of him soon. What a nerdy bar we shall be.
--Katy Ansite wrote a nice piece about us in the Brooklyn Record:

Bonus: see the top-notch comments below the article.
--I still have no feeling in part of my left middle finger. But I bet I have super-feeling in all my other fingers to compensate. Time to become a pianist.

Onward we prance,

John-C. G. R.

Monday, March 5, 2007

Post-weekend update

Jon's dad Mike was here this past week helping us with drywall. We have some more mudding to do, but that should be ready to paint before too long. This week, we're working on getting wood panelling up in a few spots, and hopefully washing our brick. If you'd like to come by to scrub brick sometime, let us know. Later this week, we may be able to get our skylight in and finish our HVAC. We're also in the process of getting another plumbing quote and hooking up phone and Internet service.

Friday, March 2, 2007

End-of-week update

Just a few things:

--The electrician is done. We have brand-new electric outlets all over the place. We'll have to have him back to do a few things later, but essentially our electricity is ready to roll.
--We went to Lowe's and our friendly neighborhood lumber store to pick up a massive amount of tools and drywall. That stuff is not light. Also, we checked out the Build it Green! warehouse in Astoria--they should be able to provide us with used sinks, piping, lumber, and the like.
--We got what may be our last keg for our apartment today from Aaron at Six Point (a Bengali Tiger, one of our favorites). Starting next month, hopefully, it gets delivered to our bar.

Some more recent pictures

The front room of our bar. You can see one of the big gaps in the brick--we think we'll install some shelving and wood panelling in that one (ideas welcome). You can also see the couch and loveseat we got from Westchester County last weekend, and the coffee table I carried from Avenue D. New HVAC and light points are also visible.

This is where the back staircase used to be. We jigsawed off the top, and amazingly were able to lift the darn cast-iron thing out of the hole and get it out the front door. Then we stuck several 2x4s in the hole and closed it up with plywood. In the future, we're looking to add trap door capability to this piece of floor.

We patched one egregiously rotted piece of floor. Once this gets painted the blackest of black glossy hues, you'll never be able to tell what we did.

We (well, Jon's dad) framed a bathroom! Doesn't it look glorious and handicapped-accessible?

We added some steps to the risers from the front room to the back room. (What's all that white stuff, you ask? Drywall is a messy, messy thing.)